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Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Baez goes boom: First big league blast wins it

Evidently, the timing was right for Javier Baez to get to the big leagues.

Playing his first Major League game, Baez launched the first pitch he saw from Boone Logan leading off the 12th inning into the bullpen for his first big league homer and hit to power the Cubs to a 6-5 victory over the Rockies.

That’s a lot of firsts, and Baez will have plenty of souvenirs to remember the game, including the home run ball, which landed in the Rockies’ bullpen.

 

Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: August 06, 2014 at 12:02 PM | 15 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cubs, home runs, prospects

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   1. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: August 06, 2014 at 08:43 PM (#4765984)

This is the fourth time in Major League history that a player has hit a go-ahead or game-winning home run in extra innings in his Major League debut. The list includes the Angels' Billy Parker (1971); the Twins' Kent Hrbek (1981); and the Marlins' Miguel Cabrera (2003).

   2. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: August 06, 2014 at 08:52 PM (#4765987)
So you're saying this kid could be the next Billy Parker?
   3. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: August 06, 2014 at 09:45 PM (#4766007)
I really liked Kent Hrbek growing up, but until just now, I did not know this:

From 1982 to 1991, his OPS+ were: 128, 131, 145, 112, 124, 142, 150, 139, 131, 125. He played mot of the games, hit a lot of HRs and got on base a lot, and was an important member of two World Series champions. And, yet, he made exactly one All-Star team: his rookie year, 1982.

I would have guessed several more than that...
   4. God Posted: August 06, 2014 at 09:53 PM (#4766010)
First base, American League, 1980s and early '90s, you would've had to beat out Don Mattingly, Eddie Murray, George Brett, Rod Carew, Fred McGriff, Mark McGwire, Darrell Evans, and probably some other guys I can't think of off the top of my head. Herbie had some rough competition.
   5. puck Posted: August 06, 2014 at 10:18 PM (#4766026)
Bah. Let's see him do something vs. major league pitching.
   6. Walt Davis Posted: August 07, 2014 at 12:15 AM (#4766083)
Boom Boom Baez or Bam Bam Baez?

Or Javier?

Yeah, 1B is often a tough spot to make an AS games. Probably a couple of HoFers playing at any given time, some moe who's on pace to hit 60 HR or break Wilson's RBI record, some kid hitting 340 in Colorado, Wrigley, Fenway.

Or ... not meant as a swipe at Hrbek, but only 1 top 5 HR finish, 1 top 10 RBI finish, 3 top 10 OPS+ finishes, apparently no top 10 WAR or even oWAR finishes.

That said, for 81-90, AL, at least 500 games at 1B he looks pretty good. Murray is well in front with 23 WAA, then Mattingly at 18 but Hrbek is right there with 15. Next closest is McGwire with 8 (86-90 only). That's probably part of the problem -- first half had Carew and Cooper, 2nd half had Mac and ... huh, Joyner only made an AS game in his rookie year.
   7. madvillain Posted: August 07, 2014 at 12:16 AM (#4766085)
Nice, have to feel good about "the plan" maybe starting to come together on the North Side. As much as this Sox fan enjoys his Cubs schadenfreude, it's probably time they started winning again if they want to make my Grandma happy before, well, yea.
   8. Norcan Posted: August 07, 2014 at 12:48 AM (#4766096)
Baez has only gone 1-10 but his swing is pretty fun to watch. The amount of torque he gets is a bit reminiscent of Julio Franco's swing. Like Franco, the extreme torque seems to make him more proficient at going the other way than pulling the ball.
   9. Walt Davis Posted: August 07, 2014 at 08:20 PM (#4766733)
All this guy does is hit home runs.

</BumPhillips ... or was it Wade?>
   10. McCoy Posted: August 07, 2014 at 08:48 PM (#4766745)
Can the Cubs just stay in Colorado for awhile?
   11. zonk Posted: August 07, 2014 at 09:04 PM (#4766750)
Baez's first HR today was a pull job just inside the foul pole.

I make no great claims to having any sort of scout's eye for swings or anything - but even the casual fan can't miss that his is something special. I'm not saying it's textbook pretty - it's just such.... controlled violence.

I was honestly a bit suspicious of Baez as a prospect. The power was there, but so were the K's and the lack of walks. Three games obviously isn't enough pronounce him arrived at stardom as hoped, but seeing that swing... I feel a whole lot more confidant that yeah, this kid is gonna work out.

</BumPhillips ... or was it Wade?>


I think it was Buddy Ryan, actually...
   12. Walt Davis Posted: August 07, 2014 at 09:27 PM (#4766769)
I think you're right. His son went on to be a coach too didn't he?
   13. Spahn Insane, stimulus-funded BurlyMan™ Posted: August 07, 2014 at 09:30 PM (#4766773)
Baez's first HR today was a pull job just inside the foul pole.

I make no great claims to having any sort of scout's eye for swings or anything - but even the casual fan can't miss that his is something special. I'm not saying it's textbook pretty - it's just such.... controlled violence.


Word.

That homer was a particularly good example of his bat speed. It was a fastball in on his hands, and yet it didn't even come close to jamming him.
   14. Spahn Insane, stimulus-funded BurlyMan™ Posted: August 07, 2014 at 09:32 PM (#4766775)
I think it was Buddy Ryan, actually...

The "all Cris Carter does is catch touchdowns" thing? Yeah, that was Ryan.
   15. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: August 08, 2014 at 01:23 AM (#4766872)
To me, the most impressive thing about his three homers is that none of them have been the result of bad pitches. For homers 1 and 3, he had to go out and get it. Career homer number 2 was, as described above, in on the hands.

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